This interesting and unusual name is of English locational origin from one of the estimated seven to ten thousand villages and hamlets that have now disappeared from maps in Britain. The prime cause of these "disappearances" was the enforced "clearing" and dispersal of the former inhabitants to make way for sheep pastures at the height of the wool trade in the 14th Century. Natural causes such as the Black Death of 1348, also contributed to the lost village phenomenon. The original place believed to be located in Yorkshire, is composed of the Norman personal name "Gislebert" which is composed of the Germanic elements "gisil", hostage, noble youth, plus "berth", bright and the second element "-thorp", farm, village, hence "Gilbert's village, settlement". At Rotherham, in Yorkshire on June 20th 1568, John Gilberthorpe married Ann Jervis while Margaret Gilberthorp married Thome Brownell at Ecclesfield, Yorkshire on October 13th 1560. Jane Gilborthorp married Jan. Griffier at St. Marylebone, Marylebone Road, London on February 13th 1673. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of George Gilberthorp, which was dated 1547, July 7th christening witness at Rotherham, Yorkshire, during the reign of King Henry V111, "Good King Hal", 1509 - 1547. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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